Learning! Roundup: Blink naps, mixed emotions, alzheimer's, legal segregation, Alan Alda's empathy lessons, and more!

Catch a Few Blinks

You know how we turn our phones and computers off and then on again when they start acting weird? Well, apparently blinking is basically a mini-reset (or a small nap) for the brain.

So Happy You're Mad

One of my best friends frowns whenever she sees something that's too cute. I remember, as a child, holding a delicate young kitten and feeling its fragile ribs under my hands and thinking it was so cute I wanted to crush it. (I didn't and would never, I swear!) So what's up with this "so good it makes me mad" phenomenon? Researchers have been looking into the various emotional reactions behind our contradictory emotional responses.

Alzheimer's Warning Signs

After analyzing ten years of research data, it appears there is a pre-symptom of alzheimer's: amyloid plaque. If you've never heard of it, that's because you're not a brain researcher. These are a protein buildup that happens outside of nerve cells that have been compared to cholesterol building in the brain.

Read Your Toddler an eBook

Most parents are incredibly aware of how much their toddlers love electronics. Well, it turns out that you can feel less guilty about that! (If you were feeling guilty in the first place, which you definitely don't have to.) New research shows that ebooks may help book comprehension in toddlers.

Fast Food Diets

On a strict diet, but still want to eat out once in a while? Here's a guide to fast food items at a host of restaurants that fit low-carb, mediterranean, pescatarian, vegan, and vegetarian diets.

The Color of Law

Most of us know that racial segregation in housing is a very real problem, both in America and around the world. The book Color of Law teaches how government policies in the U.S. not only supported, but drove this segregation. Housing projects were actually built in designated white and black neighbourhoods, segregating communities, and FHA support to middle-class renters to buy homes only existed for explicitly white neighbourhoods. I'd love it if some similar research was done for Canada and other countries. We need to better understand these histories.

Learn Empathy

Is it just me, or is Alan Alda one of the most likeable actors on the face of the earth? I'll probably listen to anything he has to say. Luckily, he talks about smart things! Here he is, discussing a technique for increasing empathy - all you have to do is pay attention to other people.

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